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East County News Service

July 22, 2021 (Dulzura) --  Members of U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) San Diego Sector’s (SDC) Border Patrol Search, Trauma and Rescue (BORSTAR) team rescued a Mexican citizen yesterday who was lost in East County San Diego and suffering from a heat emergency.

At approximately 11:45 a.m., Government of Mexico officials alerted SDC’s Foreign Operations Branch (FOB) regarding a man who had entered the United States illegally and was lost in a remote area on Otay Mountain near Dulzura.

FOB agents notified SDC’s BORSTAR team and through global positioning, located the 42-year-old man in a remote canyon.  


“During their initial assessment, the man claimed to be of sound health, but as agents attempted to escort him out of the canyon, he became disoriented and began to exhibit symptoms of dehydration and heat exhaustion.  BORSTAR agents applied cooling methods and administered intravenous fluids, but the man’s condition did not improve,”  a press release from the US. Border Patrol states.

The agents requested air assets.  San Diego County Sheriff’s Department’s Aerial Support to Regional Enforcement Agencies and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL-FIRE) – San Diego Unit both responded and hoisted the man off the mountain to a waiting ambulance, which transferred the man to a nearby hospital for treatment. 


Once medically cleared, he will be deported to Mexico.

“Collaboration is absolutely paramount when conducting rescues in these austere environments,” said Chief Patrol Agent Aaron Heitke.  “I am proud of our agents and our partners for their life-saving efforts.”

The rescue operation came just three weeks after another undocumented immigrant was found dead in a remote area of Dulzura. The body was found by a search and rescue group on June 30.


An estimated 10,000 people have died crossing the U.S.-Mexico border since 1994, according to Border Angels. The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that the rate is increasing, with more migrants dying crossing the border in the first three months of 2021 than in all of 2019.


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